The Morris County Board of County Commissioners together with the County College of Morris and the Morris County Vocational School District (MCVSD) announced on Aug. 13 announced a new Career Technical Education Center and Entrepreneurship and Culinary Science Center.
Both projects, which account for a 30% expansion of the Morris County Vocational School, are designed to provide leading-edge career and educational programs for students and adults alike.
The facilities will be built on the CCM campus, where the college opened its Advanced Manufacturing and Engineering Center last year following a series of other expansions focused on providing students with in-demand technical skills.
The Career and Technical Education Center will add 500 students to the Morris County Vocational School District’s enrollment, exposing career-focused and college-bound high school students to the type of specialized skills that will lead them to successful futures.
“Morris County is positioned as the leader in programs preparing high school students for rewarding careers in 10, high demand industries, including health care, finance, technology, manufacturing, renewable energy and supply chain logistics,” said Morris County Commissioner Director Stephen Shawin a prepared statement. “The expansion at CCM focuses on business entrepreneurship, hospitality and logistics, and it complements the recently added manufacturing/engineering and music technology buildings.”
A $24.8M investment
Funding for the projects is being provided by Morris County and the state Securing Our Children’s Future (SOCF) Bond Act.
“The county will provide $14 million in capital and additional operating funds over 10 years for the school of technology expansion and $1.3 million for the CCM expansion,” said County Commissioner John Krickus, who serves as the board’s liaison to both schools.
He noted that the total cost of the new Career Technical Education Center will be $24.8 million with $6.2 million from the county and $18.6 million from the state. The CCM Entrepreneurship and Culinary Science Center total cost will be $5.3 million, with $1.3 million from the county and $4 million from the state.
Both projects have a proposed opening date of 2024.
“One of our greatest frustrations has been turning away capable students from training in a chosen career pathway due to space limitations. This Career and Technical Education Center will afford us an opportunity to expand our program offerings to a larger and more diverse group of high school juniors and seniors,” said MCVSD Superintendent Scott Moffitt. “The collaboration between Morris County Vocational School District and CCM creates a ‘career pathway on-ramp’ for students at an age where occupation and employment become a greater focus for both students and their parents alike.”
The MCVSD expansion will operate on a share-time model for high school juniors and seniors. It will focus on workforce development and offer students industry credentials, work-based and project-based learning opportunities and up to 18 college credits. The project expands on the existing partnership the school district has with CCM to provide high school students the opportunity to earn college credits, industry-valued credentials and access to an associate degree, either upon high school completion or one year after graduation.
Plans for the Entrepreneurship and Culinary Science Center were developed by CCM in response to Morris County business and community leaders looking to accelerate entrepreneurial growth in the area.
“As the community’s college, the mission of CCM is to assist with the growth of the region and to provide people with opportunities to realize their dreams for a better future,” said Anthony Iacono, president of CCM. “This center builds upon our already successful programs and strong partnerships with business and industry so more individuals can gain a pathway to a rewarding life for themselves, their families and communities.”